How to take great photographs of your dog

Every dog owner loves to share photos of their pet. But how do you get the perfect picture? How do you master an action shot? Read our guide to taking photographs of your dog like a pro by professional dog photographer, Nigel Wallace.

Now more than ever seems like a good time to perfect a new skill. If you’re enjoying your hour of daily exercise during lockdown with a dog in tow, why not perfect your photography skills?

Nigel Wallace is a professional dog photographer based in Suffolk, specialising in ‘on location’ photography. He knows a thing or two about capturing characters, creating memories and working with natural light in beautiful East Anglian surroundings. Nigel has provided his top tips for great outdoor dog photography:

Get down low


Get to eye level with your dog to really connect with them in your photos. I often lay down on the ground to capture an image.

Focus on the dog’s eyes

It’s important to ensure the eyes are in focus as this is generally the first thing people look at when viewing photos.

Avoid blurry photos

Ensure you use a high shutter speed setting on your camera. This will help freeze your subject. For example, I use 1/1000th of a second (or faster) shutter speed for moving dogs.

Consider the background

For formal portraits, use a background free of unnecessary distractions, such as branches and twigs, which can take the impact away from the subject.

Consider the light

Using the available natural light can really show your dog at its best. Black dogs tend to photograph the best when facing the sun as this brings out the details in the face and eyes. Flash can be used carefully, if needed, if you feel that your dog would not be frightened by this.

Use natural props

Look for additional elements to add interest to the photograph. For example, a fallen tree covered in green moss can make a good posing stand.

Dogs in action

Use your camera to record a series of photographs. Using a continuous autofocus tracking setting will help keep your dog in focus whilst capturing action shots.

Using rewards

When trying to get the dog’s attention, have either a good supply of your dog’s favourite treats or a squeaky toy to encourage them to look at you.

Be patient

Your dog will not understand what all the fuss is about but will be a great model if you take your time and give positive reinforcement when setting up your shots.

Have fun

Above all else, just enjoy being out with your dog as much as they enjoy being with you. The shot of the day is often the one you least expect to capture. A relaxed dog is a happy dog.

Nigel Wallace works on location to create fun and exciting photoshoots for you and your dog. A set price and bespoke photoshoot packages are available to suit individual requirements. This includes pre-shoot consultation call to discuss what you would like from the shoot, possible locations, and to learn about your dog. For information visit or call 07720 834868.

 To view Nigel Wallace Photography showcase gallery, click here.

Facebook: Nigel Wallace Photography – Dog Photographer

Instagram: @nigel_wallace_photography


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